Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 3212

Search results for: GaN

3212 The Role of Satisfaction on Performance among Afe Babalola University Team Sports

Authors: B. O. Diyaolu

Abstract:

Viability and competency during competition is the dream of every team sports so as to have a good result. But it seems factors abound which deter the performance of even a good sports team. Different individuals with different state of mind all come together to perform in team sports with different degree of satisfaction. This study investigated the role of satisfaction on performance among Afe Babalola University team sports. Descriptive survey research design was used and the population consists of all male and female athletes in the team sports that participated in the last 2019 Ekiti State Higher Institution games (ESHIGA). Total enumeration technique was used for the three team sports; football (44), basketball (24) and volleyball (24). A total of 92 participants were involved in the research. The instrument used for the study was a modified Athlete Satisfaction Scale (ASS). The questionnaire was divided into two sections. The Cronbach’s Alpha reliability coefficient of 0.71 was obtained. The hypotheses were tested at 0.05 significant levels. The completed questionnaire was collated, coded, and analyzed using descriptive statistics of frequency counts and percentage and inferential statistics of chi-square (X2). Findings of this study revealed that satisfaction significantly influences team sports performance among Athletes of Afe Babalola University. The responsibility of satisfying athlete lies on the coaches, fans, sports administrators as well as organizers of such event, as it is not only financial reward that gives satisfaction. The performance of a team sports is quiet important and its being determined by the degree of satisfaction of each individual that make up the team. All effort must be made to satisfy athlete in order to guarantee optimum performance.

Keywords: Athlete satisfaction, Optimum achievement, Optimum performance, Sports performance, Team sports.

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3211 TiO2 Nanowires as Efficient Heterogeneous Photocatalysts for Waste-Water Treatment

Authors: Gul Afreen, Sreedevi Upadhyayula, Mahendra K. Sunkara

Abstract:

One-dimensional (1D) nanostructures like nanowires, nanotubes, and nanorods find variety of practical application owing to their unique physico-chemical properties. In this work, TiO2 nanowires were synthesized by direct oxidation of titanium particles in a unique microwave plasma jet reactor. The prepared TiO2 nanowires manifested the flexible features, and were characterized by using X-ray diffraction, Brunauer-Emmett-Teller (BET) surface area analyzer, UV-Visible and FTIR spectrophotometers, Scanning electron microscope, and Transmission electron microscope. Further, the photodegradation efficiency of these nanowires were tested against toxic organic dye like methylene blue (MB) and the results were compared with the commercial TiO2. It was found that TiO2 nanowires exhibited superior photocatalytic performance (89%) as compared to commercial TiO2 (75%) after 60 min of reaction. This is attributed to the lower recombination rate and increased interfacial charge transfer in TiO2 nanowire. Pseudo-first order kinetic modelling performed with the experimental results revealed that the rate constant of photodegradation in case of TiO2 nanowire was 1.3 times higher than that of commercial TiO2. Superoxide radical (O2˙) was found to be the major contributor in the photodegradation mechanism. Based on the trapping experiments, a plausible mechanism of the photocatalytic reaction is discussed.

Keywords: Heterogeneous catalysis, photodegradation, reactive oxygen species, TiO2 nanowires.

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3210 Micropropagation and in vitro Conservation via Slow Growth Techniques of Prunus webbii (Spach) Vierh: An Endangered Plant Species in Albania

Authors: Valbona Sota, Efigjeni Kongjika

Abstract:

Wild almond is a woody species, which is difficult to propagate either generatively by seed or by vegetative methods (grafting or cuttings) and also considered as Endangered (EN) in Albania based on IUCN criteria. As a wild relative of cultivated fruit trees, this species represents a source of genetic variability and can be very important in breeding programs and cultivation. For this reason, it would be of interest to use an effective method of in vitro mid-term conservation, which involves strategies to slow plant growth through physicochemical alterations of in vitro growth conditions. Multiplication of wild almond was carried out using zygotic embryos, as primary explants, with the purpose to develop a successful propagation protocol. Results showed that zygotic embryos can proliferate through direct or indirect organogenesis. During subculture, stage was obtained a great number of new plantlets identical to mother plants derived from the zygotic embryos. All in vitro plantlets obtained from subcultures underwent in vitro conservation by minimal growth in low temperature (4ºC) and darkness. The efficiency of this technique was evaluated for 3, 6, and 10 months of conservation period. Maintenance in these conditions reduced micro cuttings growth. Survival and regeneration rates for each period were evaluated and resulted that the maximal time of conservation without subculture on 4ºC was 10 months, but survival and regeneration rates were significantly reduced, specifically 15.6% and 7.6%. An optimal period of conservation in these conditions can be considered the 5-6 months storage, which can lead to 60-50% of survival and regeneration rates. This protocol may be beneficial for mass propagation, mid-term conservation, and for genetic manipulation of wild almond.

Keywords: Micropropagation, minimal growth, storage, wild almond.

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3209 Microbial Assessment of Dairy Byproducts in Albania as a Basis for Consumer Safety

Authors: Klementina Puto, Ermelinda Nexhipi, Evi Llaka

Abstract:

Dairy by-products are a fairly good environment for microorganisms due to their composition for their growth. Microbial populations have a significant impact in the production of cheese, butter, yogurt, etc. in terms of their organoleptic quality and at the same time some also cause their breakdown. In this paper, the microbiological contamination of soft cheese, butter and yogurt produced in the country (domestic) and imported is assessed, as an indicator of hygiene with impact on public health. The study was extended during September 2018-June 2019 and was divided into three periods, September-December, January-March, and April-June. During this study, a total of 120 samples were analyzed, of which 60 samples of cheese and butter locally produced, and 60 samples of imported soft cheese and butter productions. The microbial indicators analyzed are Staphylococcus aureus and E. coli. Analyzes have been conducted at the Food Safety Laboratory (FSIV) in Tirana in accordance with EU Regulation 2073/2005. Sampling was performed according to the specific international standards for these products (ISO 6887 and ISO 8261). Sampling and transport of samples were done under sterile conditions. Also, coding of samples was done to preserve the anonymity of subjects. After the analysis, the country's soft cheese products compared to imports were more contaminated with S. aureus and E. coli. Meanwhile, the imported butter samples that were analyzed, resulted within norms compared to domestic ones. Based on the results, it was concluded that the microbial quality of samples of cheese, butter and yogurt analyzed remains a real problem for hygiene in Albania. The study will also serve business operators in Albania to improve their work to ensure good hygiene on the basis of the HACCP plan and to provide a guarantee of consumer health.

Keywords: Consumer, health, dairy, by-products, microbial.

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3208 Adsorption and Electrochemical Regeneration for Industrial Wastewater Treatment

Authors: H. M. Mohammad, A. Martin, N. Brown, N. Hodson, P. Hill, E. Roberts

Abstract:

Graphite intercalation compound (GIC) has been demonstrated to be a useful, low capacity and rapid adsorbent for the removal of organic micropollutants from water. The high electrical conductivity and low capacity of the material lends itself to electrochemical regeneration. Following electrochemical regeneration, equilibrium loading under similar conditions is reported to exceed that achieved by the fresh adsorbent. This behavior is reported in terms of the regeneration efficiency being greater than 100%. In this work, surface analysis techniques are employed to investigate the material in three states: ‘Fresh’, ‘Loaded’ and ‘Regenerated’. ‘Fresh’ GIC is shown to exhibit a hydrogen and oxygen rich surface layer approximately 150 nm thick. ‘Loaded’ GIC shows a similar but slightly thicker surface layer (approximately 370 nm thick) and significant enhancement in the hydrogen and oxygen abundance extending beyond 600 nm from the surface. 'Regenerated’ GIC shows an oxygen rich layer, slightly thicker than the fresh case at approximately 220 nm while showing a very much lower hydrogen enrichment at the surface. Results demonstrate that while the electrochemical regeneration effectively removes the phenol model pollutant, it also oxidizes the exposed carbon surface. These results may have a significant impact on the estimation of adsorbent life.

Keywords: Graphite, adsorbent, electrochemical, regeneration, phenol.

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3207 Separation of Water/Organic Mixtures Using Micro- and Nanostructured Membranes of Special Type of Wettability

Authors: F. R. Sultanov Ch. Daulbayev, B. Bakbolat, Z. A. Mansurov, A. A. Zhurintaeva, R. I. Gadilshina, A. B. Dugali

Abstract:

Both hydrophilic-oleophobic and hydrophobic-oleophilic membranes were obtained by coating of the substrate of membranes, presented by stainless steel meshes with various dimensions of their openings, with a composition that forms the special type of their surface wettability via spray-coating method. The surface morphology of resulting membranes was studied using SEM, the type of their wettability was identified by measuring the contact angle between the surface of membrane and a drop of studied liquid (water or organic liquid) and efficiency of continuous separation of water and organic liquid was studied on self-assembled setup.

Keywords: Membrane, stainless steel mesh, oleophobicity, hydrophobicity, separation, water, organic liquids.

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3206 Assessment of Soil Contamination on the Content of Macro and Microelements and the Quality of Grass Pea Seeds (Lathyrus sativus L.)

Authors: Violina R. Angelova

Abstract:

Comparative research has been conducted to allow us to determine the content of macro and microelements in the vegetative and reproductive organs of grass pea and the quality of grass pea seeds, as well as to identify the possibility of grass pea growth on soils contaminated by heavy metals. The experiment was conducted on an agricultural field subjected to contamination from the Non-Ferrous-Metal Works (MFMW) near Plovdiv, Bulgaria. The experimental plots were situated at different distances of 0.5 km and 8 km, respectively, from the source of pollution. On reaching commercial ripeness the grass pea plants were gathered. The composition of the macro and microelements in plant materials (roots, stems, leaves, seeds), and the dry matter content, sugars, proteins, fats and ash contained in the grass pea seeds were determined. Translocation factors (TF) and bioaccumulation factor (BCF) were also determined. The quantitative measurements were carried out through inductively-coupled plasma (ICP). The grass pea plant can successfully be grown on soils contaminated by heavy metals. Soil pollution with heavy metals does not affect the quality of the grass pea seeds. The seeds of the grass pea contain significant amounts of nutrients (K, P, Cu, Fe Mn, Zn) and protein (23.18-29.54%). The distribution of heavy metals in the organs of the grass pea has a selective character, which reduces in the following order: leaves > roots > stems > seeds. BCF and TF values were greater than one suggesting efficient accumulation in the above ground parts of grass pea plant. Grass pea is a plant that is tolerant to heavy metals and can be referred to the accumulator plants. The results provide valuable information about the chemical and nutritional composition of the seeds of the grass pea grown on contaminated soils in Bulgaria. The high content of macro and microelements and the low concentrations of toxic elements in the grass pea grown in contaminated soil make it possible to use the seeds of the grass pea as animal feed.

Keywords: Grass pea, heavy metals, micro and macroelements, polluted soils, quality.

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3205 The Governance of Islamic Banks in Morocco: Meaning, Strategic Vision and Purposes Attributed to the Governance System

Authors: Lalla Nezha Lakmiti, Abdelkahar Zahid

Abstract:

Due to the setbacks on the international scene and the wave of cacophonic financial scandals affecting large international groups, the new Islamic finance industry is not immune despite its initial resistance. The purpose of this paper is to understand and analyze the meaning of the Corporate Governance (CG) concept in Moroccan Islamic banking systems with specific reference to their institutions. The research objective is to identify also the path taken and adopted by these banks recently set up in Morocco. The foundation is rooted in shari'a, in particular, no stakeholder (the shareholding approach) must be harmed, and the ethical value is reflected into these parties’ behavior. We chose a qualitative method, semi-structured interviews where six managers provided answers about their banking systems. Since these respondents held a senior position (directors) within their organizations, it is felt that they are well placed and have the necessary knowledge to provide us with information to answer the questions asked. The results identified the orientation of participating banks and assessing how governance works, while determining which party is fovoured: shareholders, stakeholders or both. This study discusses the favorable condition to the harmonization of the regulations and therefore a better integration between Islamic finance and conventional ones in the economic context of Morocco.

Keywords: Corporate governance, participating banks, stakeholders, shareholders, and interests.

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3204 Total Organic Carbon, Porosity and Permeability Correlation: A Tool for Carbon Dioxide Storage Potential Evaluation in Irati Formation of the Parana Basin, Brazil

Authors: Richardson M. Abraham-A., Colombo Celso Gaeta Tassinari

Abstract:

The correlation between Total Organic Carbon (TOC) and flow units have been carried out to predict and compare the carbon dioxide (CO2) storage potential of the shale and carbonate rocks in Irati Formation of the Parana Basin. The equations for permeability (K), reservoir quality index (RQI) and flow zone indicator (FZI) are redefined and engaged to evaluate the flow units in both potential reservoir rocks. Shales show higher values of TOC compared to carbonates, as such,  porosity (Ф) is most likely to be higher in shales compared to carbonates. The increase in Ф corresponds to the increase in K (in both rocks). Nonetheless, at lower values of Ф, K is higher in carbonates compared to shales. This shows that at lower values of TOC in carbonates, Ф is low, yet, K is likely to be high compared to shale. In the same vein, at higher values of TOC in shales, Ф is high, yet, K is expected to be low compared to carbonates.  Overall, the flow unit factors (RQI and FZI) are better in the carbonates compared to the shales. Moreso, within the study location,  there are some portions where the thicknesses of the carbonate units are higher compared to the shale units. Most parts of the carbonate strata in the study location are fractured in situ, hence,  this could provide easy access for the storage of CO2. Therefore, based on these points and the disparities between the flow units in the evaluated rock types, the carbonate units are expected to show better potentials for the storage of CO2. The shale units may be considered as potential cap rocks or seals.

Keywords: Total organic carbon, flow units, carbon dioxide storage.

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3203 Public Service Ethics in Public Administration: An Empirical Investigation

Authors: Kalsoom Sumra

Abstract:

The increasing concern of public sector reforms brings new challenges to public service ethics in developing countries not only at central level but also at local level. This paper aims to identify perceptions on public service ethics of public officials and examines more generally the understanding of public servants in Pakistan towards public service ethics in local public organizations. The study uses an independently administered structured questionnaire to collect data to know the extent of the recognition of public service ethics in local organizations. A total of 150 completed questionnaires are analyzed received from public servants working at the local level in Pakistan. The analysis explores how traditional, social patterns and cultural ethics can provide us with a rounded picture of the main antecedents, moderators of public service ethics in Pakistan. Moreover, the findings of this study contribute in association of public service ethics which are crucial in ongoing political and administrative culture of Pakistan, the most crucial core for public organizational ethical climate. This study also has numerous implications for local public administration and it highlights the importance of expanding research agenda on public service ethics in developing settings with challenging institutional contexts with imperfect training and operating environments. This study may well be particularly important for practice of public service ethics in developing countries in public administration. To the best of author’s knowledge, this study is the first of its kind to provide an initial step in practical implications to emphasize relevant public service ethics in public administration in developing transparent and accountable organization.

Keywords: Public service ethics, accountability and transparency, public service reforms, public administration, organizational ethical climate.

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3202 Effect of Copper Ions Doped-Hydroxyapatite 3D Fiber Scaffold

Authors: Adil Elrayah, Jie Weng, Esra Suliman

Abstract:

The mineral in human bone is not pure stoichiometric calcium phosphate (Ca/P) as it is partially substituted by in organic elements. In this study, the copper ions (Cu2+) substituted hydroxyapatite (CuHA) powder has been synthesized by the co-precipitation method. The CuHA powder has been used to fabricate CuHA fiber scaffolds by sol-gel process and the following sinter process. The resulted CuHA fibers have slightly different microstructure (i.e. porosity) compared to HA fiber scaffold, which is denser. The mechanical properties test was used to evaluate CuHA, and the results showed decreases in both compression strength and hardness tests. Moreover, the in vitro used endothelial cells to evaluate the angiogenesis of CuHA. The result illustrated that the viability of endothelial cell on CuHA fiber scaffold surfaces tends to antigenic behavior. The results obtained with CuHA scaffold give this material benefit in biological applications such as antimicrobial, antitumor, antigens, compacts, filling cavities of the tooth and for the deposition of metal implants anti-tumor, anti-cancer, bone filler, and scaffold.

Keywords: Fiber scaffold, copper ions, hydroxyapatite, hardness, in vitro, mechanical properties.

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3201 Development of a Small-Group Teaching Method for Enhancing the Learning of Basic Acupuncture Manipulation Optimized with the Theory of Motor Learning

Authors: Wen-Chao Tang, Tang-Yi Liu, Ming Gao, Gang Xu, Hua-Yuan Yang

Abstract:

This study developed a method for teaching acupuncture manipulation in small groups optimized with the theory of motor learning. Sixty acupuncture students and their teacher participated in our research. Motion videos were recorded of their manipulations using the lifting-thrusting method. These videos were analyzed using Simi Motion software to acquire the movement parameters of the thumb tip. The parameter velocity curves along Y axis was used to generate small teaching groups clustered by a self-organized map (SOM) and K-means. Ten groups were generated. All the targeted instruction based on the comparative results groups as well as the videos of teacher and student was provided to the members of each group respectively. According to the theory and research of motor learning, the factors or technologies such as video instruction, observational learning, external focus and summary feedback were integrated into this teaching method. Such efforts were desired to improve and enhance the effectiveness of current acupuncture teaching methods in limited classroom teaching time and extracurricular training.

Keywords: Acupuncture, group teaching, video instruction, observational learning, external focus, summary feedback.

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3200 A Survey of Key Challenges of Adopting Agile in Global Software Development: A Case Study with Malaysia Perspective

Authors: Amna Batool

Abstract:

Agile methodology is the current most popular technique in software development projects. Agile methods in software development bring optimistic impact on software performances, quality and customer satisfaction. There are some organizations and small-medium enterprises adopting agile into their local software development projects as well as in distributed software development projects. Adopting agile methods in local software development projects is valuable. However, agile global software deployment needs an attention. There are different key challenges in agile global software development that need to resolve and enhance the global software development cycles. The proposed systematic literature review investigates all key challenges of agile in global software development. Moreover, a quantitative methodology (an actual survey) targeted to present a real case scenario of these particular key challenges faced by one of the software houses that is BestWeb Malaysia. The outcomes of systematic literature and the results of quantitative methodology are compared with each other to evaluate if the key challenges pointed out in systematic review still exist. The proposed research and its exploratory results can assist small medium enterprises to avoid these challenges by adopting the best practices in their global software development projects. Moreover, it is helpful for novice researchers to get valuable information altogether.

Keywords: Agile software development, ASD challenges, agile global software development. challenges in agile global software development.

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3199 Experimental Characterization of the Thermal Behavior of a Sawdust Mortar

Authors: F. Taouche-Kheloui, O. Fedaoui-Akmoussi, K. Ait tahar, Li. Alex

Abstract:

Currently, the reduction of energy consumption, through the use of abundant and recyclable natural materials, for better thermal insulation represents an important area of research. To this end, the use of bio-sourced materials has been identified as one of the green sectors with a very high economic development potential for the future. Because of its role in reducing the consumption of fossil-based raw materials, it contributes significantly to the storage of atmospheric carbon, limits greenhouse gas emissions and creates new economic opportunities. This study constitutes a contribution to the elaboration and the experimental characterization of the thermal behavior of a sawdust-reduced mortar matrix. We have taken into account the influence of the size of the grain fibers of sawdust, hence the use of three different ranges and also different percentage in the different confections. The intended practical application consists of producing a light weight compound at a lower cost to ensure a better thermal and acoustic behavior compared to that existing in the field, in addition to the desired resistances. Improving energy performance, while reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the building sector, is amongst the objectives to be achieved. The results are very encouraging and highlight the value of the proposed design of organic-source mortar panels which have specific mechanical properties acceptable for their use, low densities, lower cost of manufacture and labor, and above all a positive impact on the environment.

Keywords: Mortar, sawdust waste, thermal, experimental, analysis.

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3198 Review of the Road Crash Data Availability in Iraq

Authors: Abeer K. Jameel, Harry Evdorides

Abstract:

Iraq is a middle income country where the road safety issue is considered one of the leading causes of deaths. To control the road risk issue, the Iraqi Ministry of Planning, General Statistical Organization started to organise a collection system of traffic accidents data with details related to their causes and severity. These data are published as an annual report. In this paper, a review of the available crash data in Iraq will be presented. The available data represent the rate of accidents in aggregated level and classified according to their types, road users’ details, and crash severity, type of vehicles, causes and number of causalities. The review is according to the types of models used in road safety studies and research, and according to the required road safety data in the road constructions tasks. The available data are also compared with the road safety dataset published in the United Kingdom as an example of developed country. It is concluded that the data in Iraq are suitable for descriptive and exploratory models, aggregated level comparison analysis, and evaluation and monitoring the progress of the overall traffic safety performance. However, important traffic safety studies require disaggregated level of data and details related to the factors of the likelihood of traffic crashes. Some studies require spatial geographic details such as the location of the accidents which is essential in ranking the roads according to their level of safety, and name the most dangerous roads in Iraq which requires tactic plan to control this issue. Global Road safety agencies interested in solve this problem in low and middle-income countries have designed road safety assessment methodologies which are basing on the road attributes data only. Therefore, in this research it is recommended to use one of these methodologies.

Keywords: Data availability, Iraq, road safety.

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3197 Multistage Data Envelopment Analysis Model for Malmquist Productivity Index Using Grey's System Theory to Evaluate Performance of Electric Power Supply Chain in Iran

Authors: Mesbaholdin Salami, Farzad Movahedi Sobhani, Mohammad Sadegh Ghazizadeh

Abstract:

Evaluation of organizational performance is among the most important measures that help organizations and entities continuously improve their efficiency. Organizations can use the existing data and results from the comparison of units under investigation to obtain an estimation of their performance. The Malmquist Productivity Index (MPI) is an important index in the evaluation of overall productivity, which considers technological developments and technical efficiency at the same time. This article proposed a model based on the multistage MPI, considering limited data (Grey’s theory). This model can evaluate the performance of units using limited and uncertain data in a multistage process. It was applied by the electricity market manager to Iran’s electric power supply chain (EPSC), which contains uncertain data, to evaluate the performance of its actors. Results from solving the model showed an improvement in the accuracy of future performance of the units under investigation, using the Grey’s system theory. This model can be used in all case studies, in which MPI is used and there are limited or uncertain data.

Keywords: Malmquist Index, Grey's Theory, Charnes Cooper & Rhodes (CCR) Model, network data envelopment analysis, Iran electricity power chain.

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3196 Factors Militating the Organization of Intramural Sport Programs in Secondary Schools: A Case Study of the Ekiti West Local Government Area of Ekiti State, Nigeria

Authors: Adewole Taiwo Adelabu

Abstract:

The study investigated the factors militating the organization of intramural sports programs in secondary schools in Ekiti State, Nigeria. The purpose of the study was to identify the factors affecting the organization of sports in secondary schools and also to proffer possible solutions to these factors. The study employed the inferential statistics of chi-square (x2). Five research hypotheses were formulated. The population for the study was all the students in the government-owned secondary schools in Ekiti West Local Government of Ekiti State Nigeria. The sample for the study was 60 students in three schools within the local government selected through simple random sampling techniques. The instrument used for the study was a self-developed questionnaire by the researcher for data collection. The instrument was presented to experts and academicians in the field of Human Kinetics and Health Education for construct and content validation. A reliability test was conducted which involves 10 students who are not part of the study. The test-retest coefficient of 0.74 was obtained which attested to the fact that the instrument was reliable enough for the study. The validated questionnaire was administered to the students in their various schools by the researcher with the help of two research assistants; the questionnaires were filled and returned to the researcher immediately. The data collected were analyzed using the descriptive statistics of frequency count, percentage and mean to analyze demographic data in section A of the questionnaire, while inferential statistics of chi-square was used to test the hypotheses at 0.05 alpha level. The results of the study revealed that personnel, fund, schedule (time) were significant factors that affect the organization of intramural sport programs among students in secondary schools in Ekiti West Local Government Area of the State. The study also revealed that organization of intramural sports programs among students of secondary schools will improve and motivate students’ participation in sports beyond the local level. However, facilities and equipment is not a significant factor affecting the organization of intramural sports among secondary school students in Ekiti West Local Government Area.

Keywords: Challenge, militating, intramural sport, programs.

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3195 Dye Removal from Aqueous Solution by Regenerated Spent Bleaching Earth

Authors: Ahmed I. Shehab, Sabah M. Abdel Basir, M. A. Abdel Khalek, M. H. Soliman, G. Elgemeie

Abstract:

Spent bleaching earth (SBE) recycling and utilization as an adsorbent to eliminate dyes from aqueous solution was studied. Organic solvents and subsequent thermal treatment were carried out to recover and reactivate the SBE. The effect of pH, temperature, dye’s initial concentration, and contact time on the dye removal using recycled spent bleaching earth (RSBE) was investigated. Recycled SBE showed better removal affinity of cationic than anionic dyes. The maximum removal was achieved at pH 2 and 8 for anionic and cationic dyes, respectively. Kinetic data matched with the pseudo second-order model. The adsorption phenomenon governing this process was identified by the Langmuir and Freundlich isotherms for anionic dye while Freundlich model represented the sorption process for cationic dye. The changes of Gibbs free energy (ΔG°), enthalpy (ΔH°), and entropy (ΔS°) were computed and compared through thermodynamic study for both dyes.

Keywords: Spent bleaching earth, Regeneration, Dye removal, Thermodynamics.

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3194 Impact of Dynamic Capabilities on Knowledge Management Processes

Authors: Farzad Yavari, Fereydoun Ohadi

Abstract:

Today, with the development and growth of technology and extreme environmental changes, organizations need to identify opportunities and create creativity and innovation in order to be able to maintain or improve their position in competition with others. In this regard, it is necessary that the resources and assets of the organization are coordinated and reviewed in accordance with the orientation of the strategy. One of the competitive advantages of the present age is knowledge management, which is to equip the organization with the knowledge of the day and disseminate among employees and use it in the development of products and services. Therefore, in the forthcoming research, the impact of dynamic capabilities components (sense, seize, and reconfiguration) has been investigated on knowledge management processes (acquisition, integration and knowledge utilization) in the MAPNA Engineering and Construction Company using a field survey and applied research method. For this purpose, a questionnaire was filled out in the form of 15 questions for dynamic components and 15 questions for measuring knowledge management components and distributed among 46 employees of the knowledge management organization. Validity of the questionnaire was evaluated through content validity and its reliability with Cronbach's coefficient. Pearson correlation test and structural equation technique were used to analyze the data. The results of the research indicate a positive significant correlation between the components of dynamic capabilities and knowledge management.

Keywords: Dynamic capabilities, knowledge management, sense capability, seize capability, reconfigurable capability, knowledge acquisition, knowledge integrity, knowledge utilization.

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3193 Optimization of Solar Rankine Cycle by Exergy Analysis and Genetic Algorithm

Authors: R. Akbari, M. A. Ehyaei, R. Shahi Shavvon

Abstract:

Nowadays, solar energy is used for energy purposes such as the use of thermal energy for domestic, industrial and power applications, as well as the conversion of the sunlight into electricity by photovoltaic cells. In this study, the thermodynamic simulation of the solar Rankin cycle with phase change material (paraffin) was first studied. Then energy and exergy analyses were performed. For optimization, a single and multi-objective genetic optimization algorithm to maximize thermal and exergy efficiency was used. The parameters discussed in this paper included the effects of input pressure on turbines, input mass flow to turbines, the surface of converters and collector angles on thermal and exergy efficiency. In the organic Rankin cycle, where solar energy is used as input energy, the fluid selection is considered as a necessary factor to achieve reliable and efficient operation. Therefore, silicon oil is selected for a high-temperature cycle and water for a low-temperature cycle as an operating fluid. The results showed that increasing the mass flow to turbines 1 and 2 would increase thermal efficiency, while it reduces and increases the exergy efficiency in turbines 1 and 2, respectively. Increasing the inlet pressure to the turbine 1 decreases the thermal and exergy efficiency, and increasing the inlet pressure to the turbine 2 increases the thermal efficiency and exergy efficiency. Also, increasing the angle of the collector increased thermal efficiency and exergy. The thermal efficiency of the system was 22.3% which improves to 33.2 and 27.2% in single-objective and multi-objective optimization, respectively. Also, the exergy efficiency of the system was 1.33% which has been improved to 1.719 and 1.529% in single-objective and multi-objective optimization, respectively. These results showed that the thermal and exergy efficiency in a single-objective optimization is greater than the multi-objective optimization.

Keywords: Exergy analysis, Genetic algorithm, Rankine cycle, Single and Multi-objective function.

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3192 The Role of Social Civil Competencies in Organizational Performance

Authors: I. Martins, A. Martins

Abstract:

The European Union supports social and civil competencies as being a core element to develop sustainability of organizations, people and regions. These competencies are fundamental for the well-being of the community because they include interpersonal, intrapersonal as well as their civil, active and democratic participation in organizations. The combination of these competencies reveals the organizational socio-emotional maturity and allows relevant levels of performance. It also allows the development of various capitals, namely, human, structural, relational and social, with direct influence on performance. But along this path, the emotional aspect has not been valued as a capital, given that contemporary society is based on knowledge capital and is flooded with information viewed as a capital. The present study, based on the importance of these socio-emotional capitals, aims to show that the competencies of cooperation, interpersonal understanding, empathy, kindness, ability to listen, and tolerance, to mention a few, are strategic in consolidating knowledge within organizations. This implies that the humanizing processes, both inside and outside the organizations, are revitalized. The question is how to go about doing this and its implementation; as well as, where to begin and which guidelines to take on. These are the foci that guide the present study, bearing in mind the directions of the knowledge economy.

Keywords: Social competencies, civil competencies, humanizing, performance.

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3191 Diagnosis of Intermittent High Vibration Peaks in Industrial Gas Turbine Using Advanced Vibrations Analysis

Authors: Abubakar Rashid, Muhammad Saad, Faheem Ahmed

Abstract:

This paper provides a comprehensive study pertaining to diagnosis of intermittent high vibrations on an industrial gas turbine using detailed vibrations analysis, followed by its rectification. Engro Polymer & Chemicals Limited, a Chlor-Vinyl complex located in Pakistan has a captive combined cycle power plant having two 28 MW gas turbines (make Hitachi) & one 15 MW steam turbine. In 2018, the organization faced an issue of high vibrations on one of the gas turbines. These high vibration peaks appeared intermittently on both compressor’s drive end (DE) & turbine’s non-drive end (NDE) bearing. The amplitude of high vibration peaks was between 150-170% on the DE bearing & 200-300% on the NDE bearing from baseline values. In one of these episodes, the gas turbine got tripped on “High Vibrations Trip” logic actuated at 155µm. Limited instrumentation is available on the machine, which is monitored with GE Bently Nevada 3300 system having two proximity probes installed at Turbine NDE, Compressor DE &at Generator DE & NDE bearings. Machine’s transient ramp-up & steady state data was collected using ADRE SXP & DSPI 408. Since only 01 key phasor is installed at Turbine high speed shaft, a derived drive key phasor was configured in ADRE to obtain low speed shaft rpm required for data analysis. By analyzing the Bode plots, Shaft center line plot, Polar plot & orbit plots; rubbing was evident on Turbine’s NDE along with increased bearing clearance of Turbine’s NDE radial bearing. The subject bearing was then inspected & heavy deposition of carbonized coke was found on the labyrinth seals of bearing housing with clear rubbing marks on shaft & housing covering at 20-25 degrees on the inner radius of labyrinth seals. The collected coke sample was tested in laboratory & found to be the residue of lube oil in the bearing housing. After detailed inspection & cleaning of shaft journal area & bearing housing, new radial bearing was installed. Before assembling the bearing housing, cleaning of bearing cooling & sealing air lines was also carried out as inadequate flow of cooling & sealing air can accelerate coke formation in bearing housing. The machine was then taken back online & data was collected again using ADRE SXP & DSPI 408 for health analysis. The vibrations were found in acceptable zone as per ISO standard 7919-3 while all other parameters were also within vendor defined range. As a learning from subject case, revised operating & maintenance regime has also been proposed to enhance machine’s reliability.

Keywords: ADRE, bearing, gas turbine, GE Bently Nevada, Hitachi, vibration.

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3190 Scheduling of Bus Fleet Departure Time Based on Mathematical Model of Number of Bus Stops for Municipality Bus Organization

Authors: Ali Abdi Kordani, Hamid Bigdelirad, Sid Mohammad Boroomandrad

Abstract:

Operating Urban Bus Transit System is a phenomenon that has a major role in transporting passengers in cities. There are many factors involved in planning and operating an Urban Bus Transit System, one of which is selecting optimized number of stops and scheduling of bus fleet departure. In this paper, we tried to introduce desirable methodology to select number of stops and schedule properly. Selecting the right number of stops causes convenience in accessibility and reduction in travel time and finally increase in public preference of this transportation mode. The achieved results revealed that number of stops must reduce from 33 to 25. Also according to scheduling and conducted economic analysis, the number of buses must decrease from 17 to 11 to have the most appropriate status for the Bus Organization.

Keywords: Number of optimized stops, organizing bus system, scheduling, urban transit.

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3189 Nigerian Football System: Examining Meso-Level Practices against a Global Model for Integrated Development of Mass and Elite Sport

Authors: I. Derek Kaka’an, P. Smolianov, D. Koh Choon Lian, S. Dion, C. Schoen, J. Norberg

Abstract:

This study was designed to examine mass participation and elite football performance in Nigeria with reference to advance international football management practices. Over 200 sources of literature on sport delivery systems were analyzed to construct a globally applicable model of elite football integrated with mass participation, comprising of the following three levels: macro- (socio-economic, cultural, legislative, and organizational), meso- (infrastructures, personnel, and services enabling sport programs) and micro-level (operations, processes, and methodologies for development of individual athletes). The model has received scholarly validation and showed to be a framework for program analysis that is not culturally bound. The Smolianov and Zakus model has been employed for further understanding of sport systems such as US soccer, US Rugby, swimming, tennis, and volleyball as well as Russian and Dutch swimming. A questionnaire was developed using the above-mentioned model. Survey questions were validated by 12 experts including academicians, executives from sport governing bodies, football coaches, and administrators. To identify best practices and determine areas for improvement of football in Nigeria, 120 coaches completed the questionnaire. Useful exemplars and possible improvements were further identified through semi-structured discussions with 10 Nigerian football administrators and experts. Finally, content analysis of Nigeria Football Federation’s website and organizational documentation was conducted. This paper focuses on the meso-level of Nigerian football delivery, particularly infrastructures, personnel, and services enabling sport programs. This includes training centers, competition systems, and intellectual services. Results identified remarkable achievements coupled with great potential to further develop football in different types of public and private organizations in Nigeria. These include: assimilating football competitions with other cultural and educational activities, providing favorable conditions for employees of all possible organizations to partake and help in managing football programs and events, providing football coaching integrated with counseling for prevention of antisocial conduct, and improving cooperation between football programs and organizations for peace-making and advancement of international relations, tourism, and socio-economic development. Accurate reporting of the sports programs from the media should be encouraged through staff training for better awareness of various events. The systematic integration of these meso-level practices into the balanced development of mass and high-performance football will contribute to international sport success as well as national health, education, and social harmony.

Keywords: Football, high performance, mass participation, Nigeria, sport development.

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3188 Effect of Sodium Aluminate on Compressive Strength of Geopolymer at Elevated Temperatures

Authors: Ji Hoi Heo, Jun Seong Park, Hyo Kim

Abstract:

Geopolymer is an inorganic material synthesized by alkali activation of source materials rich in soluble SiO2 and Al2O3. Many researches have studied the effect of aluminum species on the synthesis of geopolymer. However, it is still unclear about the influence of Al additives on the properties of geopolymer. The current study identified the role of the Al additive on the thermal performance of fly ash based geopolymer and observing the microstructure development of the composite. NaOH pellets were dissolved in water for 14 M (14 moles/L) sodium hydroxide solution which was used as an alkali activator. The weight ratio of alkali activator to fly ash was 0.40. Sodium aluminate powder was employed as an Al additive and added in amounts of 0.5 wt.% to 2 wt.% by the weight of fly ash. The mixture of alkali activator and fly ash was cured in a 75°C dry oven for 24 hours. Then, the hardened geopolymer samples were exposed to 300°C, 600°C and 900°C for 2 hours, respectively. The initial compressive strength after oven curing increased with increasing sodium aluminate content. It was also observed in SEM results that more amounts of geopolymer composite were synthesized as sodium aluminate was added. The compressive strength increased with increasing heating temperature from 300°C to 600°C regardless of sodium aluminate addition. It was consistent with the ATR-FTIR results that the peak position related to asymmetric stretching vibrations of Si-O-T (T: Si or Al) shifted to higher wavenumber as the heating temperature increased, indicating the further geopolymer reaction. In addition, geopolymer sample with higher content of sodium aluminate showed better compressive strength. It was also reflected on the IR results by more shift of the peak position assigned to Si-O-T toward the higher wavenumber. However, the compressive strength decreased after being exposed to 900°C in all samples. The degree of reduction in compressive strength was decreased with increasing sodium aluminate content. The deterioration in compressive strength was most severe in the geopolymer sample without sodium aluminate additive, while the samples with sodium aluminate addition showed better thermal durability at 900°C. This is related to the phase transformation with the occurrence of nepheline phase at 900°C, which was most predominant in the sample without sodium aluminate. In this work, it was concluded that sodium aluminate could be a good additive in the geopolymer synthesis by showing the improved compressive strength at elevated temperatures.

Keywords: Compressive strength, fly ash based geopolymer, microstructure development, sodium aluminate.

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3187 The Keys to Innovation: Defining and Evaluating Attributes that Measure Innovation Capabilities

Authors: Mohammad Samarah, Benjamin Stark, Jennifer Kindle, Langley Payton

Abstract:

Innovation is a key driver for companies, society, and economic growth. However, assessing and measuring innovation for individuals as well as organizations remains difficult. Our i5-Score presented in this study will help to overcome this difficulty and facilitate measuring the innovation potential. The score is based on a framework we call the 5Gs of innovation which defines specific innovation attributes. Those are 1) the drive for long-term goals 2) the audacity to generate new ideas, 3) the openness to share ideas with others, 4) the ability to grow, and 5) the ability to maintain high levels of optimism. To validate the i5-Score, we conducted a study at Florida Polytechnic University. The results show that the i5-Score is a good measure reflecting the innovative mindset of an individual or a group. Thus, the score can be utilized for evaluating, refining and enhancing innovation capabilities.

Keywords: Change management, innovation attributes, organizational development, STEM and venture creation.

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3186 Selenium Content in Agricultural Soils and Wheat from the Balkan Peninsula

Authors: S. Krustev, V. Angelova, P. Zaprjanova

Abstract:

Selenium (Se) is an essential micro-nutrient for human and animals but it is highly toxic. Its organic compounds play an important role in biochemistry and nutrition of the cells. Concentration levels of this element in the different regions of the world vary considerably. This study aimed to compare the availability and levels of the Se in some rural areas of the Balkan Peninsula and relationship with the concentrations of other trace elements. For this purpose soil samples and wheat grains from different regions of Bulgaria, Serbia, Nord Macedonia, Romania, and Greece situated far from large industrial centers have been analyzed. The main methods for their determination were the atomic spectral techniques – atomic absorption and plasma atomic emission. As a result of this study, data on microelements levels from the main grain-producing regions of the Balkan Peninsula were determined and systematized. The presented results confirm the low levels of Se in this region: 0.222– 0.962 mg.kg-1 in soils and 0.001 - 0.005 mg.kg-1 in wheat grains and require measures to offset the effect of this deficiency.

Keywords: Agricultural soils, Balkan Peninsula, rural areas, selenium.

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3185 Origanum vulgare as a Possible Modulator of Testicular Endocrine Function in Mice

Authors: Eva Tvrdá, Barbora Babečková, Michal Ďuračka, Róbert Kirchner, Július Árvay

Abstract:

This study was designed to assess the in vitro effects of Origanum vulgare L. (oregano) extract on the testicular steroidogenesis. We focused on identifying major biomolecules present in the oregano extract, as well as to investigate its in vitro impact on the secretion of cholesterol, testosterone, dehydroepiandrosterone and androstenedione by murine testicular fragments. The extract was subjected to high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) which identified cyranosid, daidzein, thymol, rosmarinic and trans-caffeic acid among the predominant biochemical components of oregano. For the in vitro experiments, testicular fragments from 20 sexually mature Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) mice were incubated in the absence (control group) or presence of the oregano extract at selected concentrations (10, 100 and 1000 μg/mL) for 24 h. Cholesterol levels were quantified using photometry and the hormones were assessed by ELISA (Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay). Our data revealed that the release of cholesterol and androstenedione (but not dehydroepiandrosterone and testosterone) by the testicular fragments was significantly impacted by the oregano extract in a dose-dependent fashion. Supplementation of the extract resulted in a significant decline of cholesterol (P < 0.05 in case of 100 μg/mL; P < 0.01 with respect 100 μg/mL extract), as well as androstenedione (P < 0.01 with respect to 100 and 1000 μg/mL extract). Our results suggest that the biomolecules present in Origanum vulgare L. could exhibit a dose-dependent impact on the secretion of male steroids, playing a role in the regulation of testicular steroidogenesis.

Keywords: Mice, Origanum vulgare L., steroidogenesis, testes.

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3184 Identifying Critical Success Factors for Data Quality Management through a Delphi Study

Authors: Maria Paula Santos, Ana Lucas

Abstract:

Organizations support their operations and decision making on the data they have at their disposal, so the quality of these data is remarkably important and Data Quality (DQ) is currently a relevant issue, the literature being unanimous in pointing out that poor DQ can result in large costs for organizations. The literature review identified and described 24 Critical Success Factors (CSF) for Data Quality Management (DQM) that were presented to a panel of experts, who ordered them according to their degree of importance, using the Delphi method with the Q-sort technique, based on an online questionnaire. The study shows that the five most important CSF for DQM are: definition of appropriate policies and standards, control of inputs, definition of a strategic plan for DQ, organizational culture focused on quality of the data and obtaining top management commitment and support.

Keywords: Critical success factors, data quality, data quality management, Delphi, Q-Sort.

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3183 Evaluation of the Role of Advocacy and the Quality of Care in Reducing Health Inequalities for People with Autism, Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals

Authors: Jonathan Sahu, Jill Aylott

Abstract:

Individuals with Autism, Intellectual and Developmental disabilities (AIDD) are one of the most vulnerable groups in society, hampered not only by their own limitations to understand and interact with the wider society, but also societal limitations in perception and understanding. Communication to express their needs and wishes is fundamental to enable such individuals to live and prosper in society. This research project was designed as an organisational case study, in a large secondary health care hospital within the National Health Service (NHS), to assess the quality of care provided to people with AIDD and to review the role of advocacy to reduce health inequalities in these individuals. Methods: The research methodology adopted was as an “insider researcher”. Data collection included both quantitative and qualitative data i.e. a mixed method approach. A semi-structured interview schedule was designed and used to obtain qualitative and quantitative primary data from a wide range of interdisciplinary frontline health care workers to assess their understanding and awareness of systems, processes and evidence based practice to offer a quality service to people with AIDD. Secondary data were obtained from sources within the organisation, in keeping with “Case Study” as a primary method, and organisational performance data were then compared against national benchmarking standards. Further data sources were accessed to help evaluate the effectiveness of different types of advocacy that were present in the organisation. This was gauged by measures of user and carer experience in the form of retrospective survey analysis, incidents and complaints. Results: Secondary data demonstrate near compliance of the Organisation with the current national benchmarking standard (Monitor Compliance Framework). However, primary data demonstrate poor knowledge of the Mental Capacity Act 2005, poor knowledge of organisational systems, processes and evidence based practice applied for people with AIDD. In addition there was poor knowledge and awareness of frontline health care workers of advocacy and advocacy schemes for this group. Conclusions: A significant amount of work needs to be undertaken to improve the quality of care delivered to individuals with AIDD. An operational strategy promoting the widespread dissemination of information may not be the best approach to deliver quality care and optimal patient experience and patient advocacy. In addition, a more robust set of standards, with appropriate metrics, needs to be developed to assess organisational performance which will stand the test of professional and public scrutiny.

Keywords: Autism, intellectual developmental disabilities, advocacy, health inequalities, quality of care.

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